#SaferInternetDay2019: 5 Ways To Protect Yourself on the Internet

#SaferInternetDay2019: 5 Ways To Protect Yourself on the Internet Today

Today is Safer Internet Day!

Introduced in 2004 by the European Union, Safer Internet Day (SID) is an annual, worldwide event observed on February 5 to help encourage and ensure safer and better internet.

The theme for this year’s Safer Internet Day is “Together for a better internet.”

In support of this year’s Safer Internet Day, we decided to share a few tips to help you stay safe while browsing online.

Update Your Antivirus Software

One very important thing to always do while using the internet is to always use the most recent version of your antivirus software. Regardless of whether it’s a free version or a paid version, updating your antivirus is your first defence against hackers and malicious activities online. With internet threats constantly changing, your antivirus should too.

Always Use Strong Passwords

Several internet security reports show that many people still use weak passwords to secure very important information online. That’s highly risky. Although the use of passwords like guest and 123456 is dropping, people are still using easy to crack passwords. Examples include their names, countries, and other dictionary words.

With laptops and servers becoming much faster and efficient, hackers today can crack millions of passwords easily.

So do yourself a favour and upgrade your password. Rather than use “GUEST101” as your password, use something sophisticated like “Gu€$t|01”. This is not the most secure password in the world, but its much harder to crack than GUEST101.

Check URLs

Always check the url (web address/link) of websites before you visit or stay long on them. This is crucial because malicious users can design replicas of popular websites and other important websites you use. They use these to trick users into providing important details like emails, passwords, bank account details, answers to security questions, among others.

And many users get to see this a lot especially on Whatsapp as people share all sorts of fake websites promising free data and recharge cards. Be careful with them. If the url is not legit, don’t visit it.

Guard Against Fake News

Fake news is one of the biggest problems facing the world today. Although not nearly as dangerous as hacking, fake news is more disruptive than hacking. Over the last few years we’ve seen how fake news has affected the US elections, Brazil and even Nigeria.

Fake news spread easily online because people aren’t careful about checking the sources of news they read. They simply read (or glance at) a story and proceed to share them to others.

So on this safer internet day, take your time to verify sources of online news. Or better still, only read news from trusted publications.

Be Careful What You Post

The internet and social media have become an integral part of our modern world. So it is only imperative that you check what you post to ensure that it does not come back to hunt or ruin you at any point in your future. Don’t put anything online that you wouldn’t want your family, friends or a prospective employer to see.

Stay safe online.

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